Harvard-Yenching Library


The Harvard–Yenching Library is the primary location for East Asia-related collections at Harvard Library. The building was originally built in 1929 for Harvard's Institute of Geographical Exploration and currently houses part of the Harvard-Yenching Institute and the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, in addition to the Harvard-Yenching Library. In addition to East Asian languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Tibetan, Manchu, and Mongolian), it houses collections in European languages and Southeast Asian language (Vietnamese). Totaling more than 1.5 million volumes, the Harvard-Yenching Library has one of the largest collections in East Asian studies outside of Asia. The library has been located at 2 Divinity Avenue on the Cambridge campus of Harvard University since around 1957. Following World War II, the library began collecting more social science publications. The once predominantly humanistic collection evolved into a research library that encompasses East Asian materials in all academic disciplines. A. Kaiming Chiu served as head librarian of the library until his retirement in 1964, after which he was succeeded by Eugene Wu. In 1965, the Chinese-Japanese Library of the Harvard-Yenching Institute was renamed the Harvard-Yenching Library to reflect the expanded nature of the library's collections. The Library eventually added Tibetan, Mongolian and Manchu publications, as well as Western language monographs and journals. A Korean collection was added in 1951, and a Vietnamese collection in 1973. In 1976, management of the library shifted from the independent Harvard-Yenching Institute to the Harvard College Library.

Constructed, 1929